Whether you’re into concept art, illustration, character design, comics or storyboards, I’m constantly pushing you to create personal projects and pursue amazing collaborations.

Why?

The success of concept artist Robert Simons is why.

Previously, on the ArtCast, I interviewed the director and composer of Project Arbiter - an indie sci-fi short film with a big-budget look.

Robert Simons’ concept work on Project Arbiter demonstrated a surprising level of maturity (He was only 19 years old at the time).  Unsuprisingly, his career now includes concept work on huge films like Ender’s Game and The Amazing Spider-man 2.

In this interview, we hear how Robert’s career evolved, his attitude toward criticism, obsession and creating art with meaning.

…and in the Q&A segment, my good friend Matt Kohr joins me to respond to a listener question about whether you need to move to the west coast of the United States in order to become a concept artist…

Click here to learn more…

(Source: ChrisOatley.com)

concept art concept art jobs concept artist project arbiter robert simons ender's game amazing spider-man

This is great on multiple levels.
Artists, we shouldn’t let the Nikeness distract us from the message.

This is great on multiple levels.

Artists, we shouldn’t let the Nikeness distract us from the message.

This is the first demo for my “Epic Skies” tutorial series which is a part of my digital painting course called The Magic Box.
My friend Stephen and I were out for an evening walk-n-talk a few weeks ago. The sunset was amazing so we started looking for a higher vantage point.
We turned a corner and spotted a football stadium on the campus of a nearby community college.
We hurried, trying to make it to the stadium before we missed our opportunity to see the sunset from the top of the stadium.
Every door and gate was locked so, like the rule-bending high school kids we were twenty years ago, we jumped the fence and climbed to the top of the stadium.
As I hope you can see from the painting, the view was well worth the effort.
This was painted from a photo I took with my iPhone. I tried to keep the painting very loose and emotional without sacrificing a thoughtful design.
Look at the high-res version to examine the brush strokes.
The brushes I used for this painting will soon be available on my website…

This is the first demo for my “Epic Skies” tutorial series which is a part of my digital painting course called The Magic Box.

My friend Stephen and I were out for an evening walk-n-talk a few weeks ago. The sunset was amazing so we started looking for a higher vantage point.

We turned a corner and spotted a football stadium on the campus of a nearby community college.

We hurried, trying to make it to the stadium before we missed our opportunity to see the sunset from the top of the stadium.

Every door and gate was locked so, like the rule-bending high school kids we were twenty years ago, we jumped the fence and climbed to the top of the stadium.

As I hope you can see from the painting, the view was well worth the effort.

This was painted from a photo I took with my iPhone. I tried to keep the painting very loose and emotional without sacrificing a thoughtful design.

Look at the high-res version to examine the brush strokes.

The brushes I used for this painting will soon be available on my website…

atmosphere blue brushes clouds sunset sunrise digital painting night nighttime orange painterly photoshop pink sky stylized epic

This is the second demo for my “How To Paint Stylized Hair” tutorial series which is a part of my digital painting course called The Magic Box.

During the last half of 2014 I have committed to attempting to paint the hardest subjects I can think of. …which includes pop icons.

They’re particularly challenging because they are so familiar to all of us.

So far, this series includes Jimi Hendrix and Marilyn Monroe (which I’ll post here in the coming weeks).

Although challenging, I’m really happy with how this one turned out.

The brushes I used for this painting will soon be available on my website…

pop icon digital painting digital photoshop portrait portraits hair brushes

This is the first demo for my “How To Paint Stylized Hair” tutorial series which is a part of my digital painting course called The Magic Box.
During the last half of 2014 I have committed to attempting to paint the hardest subjects I can think of. …which includes pop icons. They’re particularly challenging because they are so familiar to all of us.So far, this series includes Elvis and Marilyn Monroe (which I’ll post here in the coming weeks).Although challenging, I’m really happy with how this one turned out.The brushes I used for this painting will soon be available on my website.

This is the first demo for my “How To Paint Stylized Hair” tutorial series which is a part of my digital painting course called The Magic Box.

During the last half of 2014 I have committed to attempting to paint the hardest subjects I can think of. …which includes pop icons. They’re particularly challenging because they are so familiar to all of us.

So far, this series includes Elvis and Marilyn Monroe (which I’ll post here in the coming weeks).

Although challenging, I’m really happy with how this one turned out.

The brushes I used for this painting will soon be available on my website.

jimi hendrix portrait portraits pop icon classic rock hendrix

I wrote a 6-page spread for the October issue of ImagineFX Magazine featuring 15 tips to save your animation career before it starts.
A Few Of The Topics I Covered:
Adapting to different styles.
Showcase your strengths/ Hide your weaknesses.
Patience.
Laziness.
Building trust.
"Tradigital" Techniques.
Negotiating a fair rate.
The new issue (#113) also features articles by wunderkind Mingjue Helen Chen and Sorcerer Supreme Nathan Fowkes. It hits shelves in the UK on Friday and will arrive stateside about three weeks from now. …or you can just download the awesome iPad/ iPhone version.
The ImagineFX team was overwhelmingly generous with the amount of space they devoted to showcasing my artwork.
You’ll find a few new paintings (including full-page reproduction of the Octopus Artist pictured above and my newest Tin Man), a few sketches, a ”tradigital” process drawing and a color-corrected re-print of my original Animal Farm painting (it was super-dark when it appeared in the mag last year).
The amazing Cory Loftis was also kind enough to let me feature one of his illustrations to make a point about versatility.
This is my third collaboration with the wonderful folks at ImagineFX.
For more tips on how to break into animation, check out my website: ChrisOatley.com

I wrote a 6-page spread for the October issue of ImagineFX Magazine featuring 15 tips to save your animation career before it starts.

A Few Of The Topics I Covered:

  • Adapting to different styles.
  • Showcase your strengths/ Hide your weaknesses.
  • Patience.
  • Laziness.
  • Building trust.
  • "Tradigital" Techniques.
  • Negotiating a fair rate.

The new issue (#113) also features articles by wunderkind Mingjue Helen Chen and Sorcerer Supreme Nathan Fowkes. It hits shelves in the UK on Friday and will arrive stateside about three weeks from now. …or you can just download the awesome iPad/ iPhone version.

The ImagineFX team was overwhelmingly generous with the amount of space they devoted to showcasing my artwork.

You’ll find a few new paintings (including full-page reproduction of the Octopus Artist pictured above and my newest Tin Man), a few sketches, a ”tradigital” process drawing and a color-corrected re-print of my original Animal Farm painting (it was super-dark when it appeared in the mag last year).

The amazing Cory Loftis was also kind enough to let me feature one of his illustrations to make a point about versatility.

This is my third collaboration with the wonderful folks at ImagineFX.

For more tips on how to break into animation, check out my website: ChrisOatley.com

animation jobs concept art jobs illustration jobs illustration animation concept art concept art portfolio illustration portfolio Character Design character design jobs character design techniques Digital Painting Techniques drawing Disney breaking in portfolio

ericwilliamsart asked:

As a character artist that has been drawing traditionally since the beginning what is a good way to start transfer into painting digitally? I feel as though I don't have many portfolio pieces because I don't have them finished to the point of being digitally painted and that hinders studios from considering my portfolio. Is that true? Also I wanted to say I am truly inspired by you and when I get into a artistic slump one thing that always helps is your interview with Chris Oatley. Thank you.

Chris Oatley Answer:

2dbean:

Eric,

The way to start is to honestly quit reading this sentence and begin painting, Period. 

In fact, you shouldn’t even be reading this sentence right now, what are you still reading this for? 


Stop.  GO paint and come back in a few hours…I’ll wait here……

No really… GO

OK.  Back?  How was that?  Sucks huh?  You aren’t there yet.  What’s in your head isn’t on the digital canvas yet.  But it will be.  Given time, energy, and patience.  It will.  You’re learning workflow.  Lighting, where you like to start, if you enjoy working from a sketch or a blank canvas, what colors you enjoy seeing next to each other , and so many more ideas as you screw up, adjust, and paint some more.  It’s all building up steam.  But it just takes time and effort.  Things many artists don’t like to hear.  But the few who do?  They have careers.  Remember, the only difference between a professional and an Amateur is not quitting.  Well that, and meeting your deadlines….. being personable…. giving the client what they want….oh and  having a business sense…. well you get the picture.

For me, drawing is the first stage of a 4 part play. 

I think a brilliant draftsman can get a job and keep it.  But those people are rare in this industry. They’ll also have a certain something they add to their craft.  Like Glen Keane is a brilliant draftsman and animator, Nico Marlet adds a tone and light pencil to his design work, etc etc.

But people identify with you as an artist if you have something to say with your art.  Either it’s humor, sophistication, horror, story telling, etc.

It’s less about what do they want to see and more what do you want to show them.  If you want to be a line art guru than own it.  Learn a ton.  Cross hatching, variations on pencil tone, strokes, thick to thin. 

But don’t just “do something” because you think it will get you a job.  What if it doesn’t?  What if you spend the next 4 years doing it and you hate it and still no one hires you?  So now you’re broke and hate painting……That will really suck.  Learn to paint for the right reasons.  If you want to be a better painter and it will help you become a fuller artist, that’s the right reason.   So again…..quit reading this right now and paint…

We’ll wait here……

Cheers,

Bean

Are you over-thinking your process? Brett Bean helps us stay focused on first things first…

2d bean Character Design Digital Painting Techniques digital painting

In part one of this interview, Sarah Marino told the story of the struggle to find her calling as a professional artist and how she got her first animation job – not in the art department – but as a production assistant.

In this episode Sarah talks about her success in both animation and kidlit, her new gig as a background painter and VisDev artist at Nickelodeon, her new course at The Oatley Academy and how a single post-it-note doodle changed her life forever…

Do You Need An Art Mentor?

The Magic Box, our self-guided digital painting course, is a huge hit with the students.

We originally designed the course to be self-guided but many of the Magic Box students have requested mentors to provide additional help, coaching and critique with their assignments in the course.

When I started brainstorming my “dream team” for The Magic Box Mentor Sessions, Sarah Marino was the first person who came to mind.

Sarah is a fantastic artist, an evocative storyteller and an inspirational teacher.

Last year at CTN-X, Sarah was coaching aspiring and pre-professional artists atThe Oatley Academy booth. During – literally – every one of her portfolio reviews, she got right to the heart of a each person’s struggle and offered specific, inspiring, actionable feedback. One student after another walked away looking inspired, confident and prepared to level-up.

If you’re interested in applying for Sarah’s Mentor Sessions or if you’re interested in The Magic Box Mentor program in general, please click here to join the notification list.

You will receive an alert when Sarah begins accepting auditions for her mentor sessions at The Oatley Academy!

*This is NOT the main ChrisOatley.com Newsletter. This is just a notification list for the folks who are interested in The Magic Box Mentor Sessions.

Two years ago, my friend and Oatley Academy colleague Sarah Marino appeared on what is, to date, the most frequently downloaded episode of The ArtCast: The Rising Stars Of Animation.

Like every other guest on that show, Sarah has, as I predicted, gone on to great success.

After wrapping as visual development artist on The Book Of Life (the gorgeous new animated feature from Reel FX) she moved to Burbank to join the art department on Nickelodeon’s new preschool series Shimmer and Shine.

In this episode, Sarah shares the story of her happy, creative childhood, her positive experience at Ringling College Of Art and Design and the subsequent, disarming struggle of breaking into the animation industry.

…and in the Q&A segment, we respond to a listener question about developing your concept art portfolio.

EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS:

  • The unflattering truth of Sarah’s struggle to break into the animation industry.
  • The pros and cons of a big, expensive, physical art school.
  • Developing your concept art portfolio.
  • Sailor Moon, Netflix binges and CG bear butts!
  • The value of remembering why you love making art.

Get more information about Sarah’s upcoming Magic Box Mentor Sessions here: http://ChrisOatley.com/sarah-marino/

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